Skip to main content

How to Begin a Wedding Speech: 20 Speech Introductions

Got to give a speech but don't know where to begin? Our wedding speech introduction examples will help you get started

A man wearing a wedding suit visible from the shoulders down holding a wedding speech and reading over it in order to practise his wedding speech introduction

A man wearing a wedding suit visible from the shoulders down holding a wedding speech and reading over it in order to practise his wedding speech introduction

Love them or hate them, the speeches are central to any wedding reception, but it can be nerve-wracking if you're the one standing up to say a few words. Whether you're the bride, groom, father of the bride, best man or maid of honour, we've got you covered with tips to help you begin your wedding speech, including some introduction examples, so you can start strong and feel confident. 

"Getting the introduction right is key because it sets the tone for the whole speech," explains wedding wordsmith and professional speechwriter Amerdeep Sanghera of Lovingly Penned. "You don't want guests thinking, 'Oh no, not another speech'. Instead, you want to see those smiles spread. So the introduction is pretty much the most important part of the whole thing."

Sounds stressful, right? Well, don't panic. From funny opening lines to general tips on how to get started, scroll on to make sure your speech is talked about for all the right reasons… 

How to Start Your Wedding Speech

Knowing how to start your wedding speech - whether it's a traditional wedding speech or if you're going for a more modern take - can be challenging, but we've asked the experts for tips and ideas on how to beginning a wedding speech. 

1. Introduce Yourself

A maid of honour introducing her speech at a wedding next to the bride and groom, with two bridesmaids seated next to her

It doesn't matter if you're the father of the bride, the maid of honour, the best man – even the groom – it’s always polite to introduce yourself. Smile as you do so and make a bit of a joke if you feel tense, or reference how important the day is if you don’t feel like joking:

  • “Hi, I’m [BRIDE/GROOM’S NAME] – you should probably all know who I am, and if you don’t, well done for sneaking in unnoticed.”
  • “Hi, I’m [BEST MAN’S NAME], but you can call me by my full name: [BEST-MAN’S-NAME-WOULD-YOU-LIKE-A-DRINK].”
  • “Hello, I’m [FATHER OF THE BRIDE’S NAME] and I’m so delighted to welcome you all here on this beautiful day.”

Don’t go overboard with a long-winded introduction about yourself – a line or two about who you are and your role in the day will be enough.

To grab the audience's attention, be confident and keep it simple. If in doubt, start with the thank-yous. If you’re the best man, it’s fine to start with a joke (check out some of our tried and tested best man jokes to inspire you) but remember, this isn't a stand-up routine and you should always add how honoured you are to be part of the day. 

2. Make Eye Contact

Pick a few reassuring faces in the crowd and pitch your speech to them – but don’t focus just on one person. Aim for a couple of different locations around the room so the whole audience feels engaged. "A simple way to do this early on is to ask people to give the couple a round of applause," adds Amerdeep. 

If the idea of making eye contact is too much, pick inanimate objects to focus on but mix them up.

3. Have Notes to Hand

Don’t think you need to know your whole speech off by heart – you’ll feel more confident if you have your notes to hand and no one will judge you for it. If you don’t want it to feel too scripted, simply give yourself cue cards to work from.

4. Don’t Drink Too Much

A father of the bride giving a speech as the bride and groom look on and laugh

Don’t try and drown your nerves before you stand up. You might not remember your performance, but everyone else will (for a long time). Consider a one-drink limit before you begin your speech and save the celebratory fizz for after you’ve completed it – slur free!

5. Consider Hiring a Pro

If you're really stumped on how to begin your wedding speech, a professional speechwriter will help you gather your thoughts and anecdotes and put them into a coherent structure to get you started.

Speech Introduction Examples

Here are a few more ways to introduce your speech, no matter what role you’re playing in the wedding day – just tweak it to suit you and your speech.

Bride and/or Groom or Newlyweds 

  • “We would like to welcome all of you here today to celebrate and thank you for choosing to spend the day with us."
  • "Hello everyone! I hope you're having a wonderful day so far."
  • "On behalf of me and my new [WIFE/HUSBAND/SPOUSE], I'd like to thank you all for coming today!"
  • "Hi everyone - hopefully you all know who I am, otherwise you might be at the wrong wedding..."
  • "If you don't know me, allow me to introduce myself - I'm the luckiest person in the world!"

Father of the Bride or Groom

  • “Friends and family of [NAME] and [NAME], thank you for being here today to celebrate their marriage.”
  • “The highest happiness on earth is the happiness of marriage.”
  • “Today, promises have become permanent and friends have become family.”
  • “Thank you for joining us today on such a wonderful occasion.”
  • "What an honour I have, to give a speech today on my child's wedding day."
Amerdeep suggests: "Before we get into the emotional rollercoaster that is my speech, let's take a moment to appreciate the real stars of the show, [NAME] and [NAME]. Seriously, can we give them a round of applause for pulling off this spectacular event?"

If you're looking for more ideas, don't miss our father of the bride speech examples.

Maid of Honour or Bridesmaid Speech Introduction Examples

A maid of honour (Hitched Editor Zoe Burke!) introducing her maid of honour speech whilst looking at the bride and smiling

  • “Welcome to the most important day in the lives of [NAME] and [NAME].”
  • “Today is a celebration and we are here to celebrate with [NAME] and [NAME].”
  • “Love has brought [NAME] and [NAME] and everyone in this room together today.”

Amerdeep also recommends: "Hello, beautiful people! I can't help but feel like I'm on stage at the Oscars, standing here. Sadly, there's no red carpet or golden statue for me, but I do have the privilege of celebrating two incredible people and their love story tonight."

Hitched Editor Zoe Burke chose to go for humour when it came to starting her maid of honour speech. "I was the first one speaking and I knew I needed a laugh quickly to help with my nerves, so I said 'Well, I've had the chance to wear a beautiful dress, carry a gorgeous bouquet and walk down the aisle without any of the financial pressure or stress of planning a wedding, so thank you!'

"It can be trickier figuring out how to start a wedding speech if you're not one of the traditional speech givers, but adding in some humour always helps!"

You can see more maid of honour speech examples here.

Best Man

  • “My name is [BEST MAN] and it’s an honour to be here today as [GROOM]’s best man.”
  • “Hi, I’m [NAME] and it’s time for me to do this speech I scribbled down about an hour before the ceremony started.”
  • “I must admit, I’m not accustomed to public speaking. Up until I was asked to give this speech I thought a toastmaster was a kind of kitchen appliance!”
  • “Before I begin, I must admit that [NAME] and [NAME] have asked that I remove anything resembling innuendo from this speech – I’ve promised if I come across anything even slightly risqué, I’ll whip it out immediately.”

"Another favourite of mine is, 'Alright, let's kick off this party! But before we hit the dance floor, let me share a few stories about our fearless groom and his journey to this moment…'" adds Amerdeep.

If you’re still worrying about your wedding speech, don’t miss our guide on how to deal with wedding speech nerves.